Mariners to control new regional sports network

The Mariners and DIRECTV Sports Network announced the formation of a new regional sports television partnership on Tuesday that will give the baseball team a controlling interest in the year-round broadcast network.

DIRECTV Sports Network is the Mariners’ long-standing television rights holder, but the team will now hold a majority stake in the new venture.

The regional sports network will continue to operate under the ROOT Sports brand and will provide year-round coverage of the Mariners as well as other professional, college and high school sports programming.

The agreement provides that the network will televise the Mariners through the 2030 season.

DIRECTV Sports Networks, which owns and operates two other regional sports networks based in Denver and Pittsburgh, assumes a minority position and will continue to oversee management of the Northwest network.

“This is great news for the Mariners and for sports fans in the Northwest,” said Bob Aylward, Mariners executive vice president of business operations. “We are excited to continue our partnership with DIRECTV Sports Networks in this new way.

“We are investing to own a majority share of the new venture, and committing our rights well into the future, confident that this will maximize the value of our television rights and, more importantly, provide the resources to remain competitive on the field for many years to come.”

Steve Greenberg, a member of the New York investment bank Allen & Company that advised the Mariners on the transaction, said the move will help the club compete in the evolving Major League landscape.

“With the formation of this new regional sports network partnership, the Mariners have taken a significant step forward,” Greenberg said. “MLB clubs that own a substantial stake in their own RSN’s tend to be among the strongest and most stable franchises in the league.”

6 Comments

Will this move the team value high enough for the owners to sell to a local contingent?

Maybe the Mariners can negotiate the contract with BendBroadband so Central Oregonians can once again get the games!

What does this mean in terms of the teams payroll. 100mill or 130mill? Does it give them more dollars to go out and chase big time bats?

Nobody has put a number on things yet, but yes, the new agreement should help provide more money for player payroll as it has in other MLB markets.

it seems as if in the Phoenix area we sometimes are able to access the Root network and other times we are told we are not subscribed. (Direct TV) Will the new deal only offer subscription service, or can we expect to receive more games that we can view?

All this does is assure the fans that we will be watching crap baseball in the future. TV contracts are the financial life blood to sports teams. When then control those dollars in house there is NO motivation to improve. This is a sad development for fans of the M,s.
GO SONICS!

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